Toyota teases hybrid crossover concept ahead of Paris

3 pictures

The C-HR has a low, sporty cabin

View gallery - 3 images

The floodgates have opened, and the rushing waters of pre-Paris concept car previews are flowing strongly. Toyota has released a first look at its all-new C-HR Concept, which provides a sneak preview of new design language Toyota plans to bring to production.

As auto manufacturers have moved away from SUVs, toward smaller, more fuel-efficient crossovers, utility vehicles have taken a decided turn away from truck-like construction and styling in favor of car-like design. No longer is the utility vehicle a truck with integrated cap; it's much more like a ruggedized hatchback/wagon. Some of the latest crossover concepts, including the Audi TT offroad, take car-like design to new heights, rolling onto the podium as little more than modestly sized sedans/coupes with big tires and AWD systems.

The latest stage of the utility vehicle's evolution, which is poised to unfold at the upcoming Paris Motor Show, shrinks tall, beefy crossover cabins into sleek, sedan/coupe-like profiles. We see it on the QUARTZ concept from the home team over at Peugeot, and now the C-HR is preparing to bring another interpretation westward.

From the initial pictures Toyota released today, we see a sporty, sloped cabin that's set so low it all but eliminates the rear windshield. As with the QUARTZ, the cabin design gives the concept the feel of a sporty sedan merging with the high, big-wheeled lower body of a muscular crossover. That lower body gets faceted surface elements inspired by the precision cuts of a diamond.

Toyota says that the C-HR gives "an early hint" at the type of vehicle it hopes to bring the market in the future. It also says the design language has a clear future, pointing to the front end, specifically, as an example of design cues that will find their way into its lineup. Outside of calling the concept a hybrid, it doesn't provide any information about the hardware at work below the bluish-purple body. Hopefully, it'll have more concrete details at the concept's October 2 debut.

Gizmag will be on the floor of this year's Paris Motor Show, and the C-HR has piqued our interest enough to move Toyota up a few notches on our mental list of automakers we need to spend some time with. We'll have more details and live photos from the show.

View gallery - 3 images

Top stories

Recommended for you

Popular automotive pictures

Latest in Automotive

Editors Choice